Once again, California’s drought kept yields low, but quality high. 2016 swung from hot to cold and hot again. September was dry, but as harvest wound down, Napa had one of the wettest Octobers in decades. Those abrupt rainstorms put a quick end to the harvest and crops were mostly harvested by then. Here at Judd’s Hill, we were pleased by the quality and volume.
Three different vineyards were utilized to create this celebration of 30 years of Judd’s Hill wines. Cabernet Sauvignon was from the famous Howell Mountain AVA, Merlot from St. Helena and Petite Verdot from the Oro Puro Vineyard, next to Judd’s Hill. While each different grape lends its character to the blend, where the grape was grown, or terroir, lends a sense of uniqueness.
The grapes were harvested by hand then fermented in small, open top containers with twice daily punch downs. Each varietal was fermented to dryness then barrel aged for 21 months in a mix of new and neutral oak. Blending trials were focused and intensive seeking to make a blend that represented the milestone of 30 years of Judd’s Hill.
Big and bold with well-defined fruit and tannin profiles. The three different varietals each bring their definitive influences and while young, the flavors are already well integrated. You will find aromas of graphite, cocoa and vanilla extract. Rich concentrated fruit, dried cherry and cherry cola notes mingle nicely together. This is a bold and balanced wine with assertive tannins which will assist in aging.
FOOD PAIRING – provided by Judd, Owner/Vintner
30 years of Judd’s Hill and generations of family brisket braising pair up brilliantly. Have a look at my mother-in-laws brisket recipe at ww.juddshill.com under the Expressions tab. Be sure to employ my dad’s molasses addition as that deep and earthy sweetness will be a fabulous pair to the wine. Pour yourself a small glass about 20 minutes before dinner to get yourself braced and the wine a chance to breathe. As it begins to open up, this cuvee’s initial bright acid will soften into a lush and fruit-forward delight that will seamlessly compliment the tangy-sweet and meaty flavors of the brisket. Enjoy!
|Wine Style||Red Wine|
|Harvest Date||August 17 & 26, 2016|
|Aging||21 months, 30% new French oak, 70% neutral oak|
|Bottling Date||February 22, 2018|